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  • Sara

How To Use Mindfulness to Cope with Mental Health Disorders

Mental health disorders, such as depression or anxiety, take a large toll on daily life. Mental health plays a large role in how we interact with others, perform at work or in school, and our overall mood and well-being. Finding ways to cope with your mental health disorder can be difficult, and sometimes it may feel like nothing works. The next time you’re stuck in a rut, you may want to try mindfulness.


Mindfulness is a great practice that can be easily implemented into your schedule, which has been proven to improve your mental health. It involves present moment awareness. That means paying attention to your thoughts, feelings, and sensations in the here-and-now, without judgment. Mindfulness can help reduce stress, anxiety, and depression, and improve mood. It can also help with chronic pain, weight management, and improving sleep.


There are many ways to practice mindfulness, but one which is through mindful meditation. This involves sitting quietly and focusing on your breath, or on a specific object or thought. You may notice that your mind wanders, but that's okay. Just gently bring your attention back to the present moment when this happens for the duration of your meditation.


Mindfulness can be practiced anytime, anywhere. You can even do it while you're driving or doing household chores. The more you practice, the better you'll become at staying in the present moment. Practicing mindfulness means setting aside time to focus on your breath and be aware of your thoughts and sensations.


There are many different mindful meditation techniques. Some people prefer to sit or lie down in a comfortable position, while others practice walking mindfulness. The most important thing is to find a technique that works for you and to be patient. It takes time and practice to develop mindfulness skills. We live in a busy world that demands a lot of our attention. It’ll seem counterintuitive at first to slow down, give yourself some space for reflection, and allow your thoughts to come and go.


Because you’re giving yourself space that you normally would not get in this chaotic world, when practicing mindfulness, you become more your feelings and why you are feeling a certain way. Now, you’re not just feeling an emotion – you’re figuring out why you’re feeling this way.

For many, not understanding why they are so anxious or depressed only makes those feelings worse. We’re often hard on ourselves and can’t understand when we are unable to lift our mood or calm racing thoughts. The source behind these emotions is not always immediately evident. Sometimes they come and go or stick around for some time for seemingly no reason at all.


However, by learning where those feelings are coming from, and maybe even what triggers them, you can learn how to better manage them. Mindfulness can also help you distract yourself from difficult feelings when you are overwhelmed. Focusing on your body, picturing a place that gives you peace, or concentrating on your breathing can help create a sense of calm and bring balance to the mind and body.


While distracting yourself isn’t a permanent solution, it can help you focus on what is happening around you and help you think rationally. Research shows mindfulness allows us to look at things with a more accepting, positive attitude. When new stresses arise in our daily life we often become quick to panic, but mindfulness gives us the ability to be more accepting and optimistic about change. This is because, in those moments of practicing the art of mindfulness, we are telling ourselves over and over again that it’s okay to think negatively. We’re not passing judgement but, rather, simply taking notice. So, when negative things happen around us, we become conditioned to just observe. Over time, it becomes easier to reframe negativity, inviting in positive thinking.


This can be especially helpful if you are anxious when trying to focus on a task. If you start to feel a panic attack, focusing on your breathing or surroundings can help ground you, while potentially stopping the panic attack. Mindfulness helps us notice patterns of emotion in ourselves giving us a better understanding of how to avoid triggers or cope when we are triggered, in the moment.


Adding mindfulness into our daily routine is a great way to give yourself a small portion of your day to focus on only you. If we don’t make a concerted effort to do so, all too often, we dedicate each hour to someone or something else.


In the morning and before you go to bed are great times to incorporate mindfulness into your routine. By being in a positive headspace before we start our day we are more likely to take an uplifting view of what’s to come. While practicing mindfulness before we fall asleep at night helps put our minds and bodies at ease, which allows for better sleep. Whenever and wherever you choose to incorporate mindfulness into your way, you deserve it!

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